Matt's Reviews > The Third Man & The Fallen Idol

The Third Man & The Fallen Idol by Graham Greene
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's review
Aug 07, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: fiction
Read from July 26 to August 05, 2010

After reading The Third Man, or more specifically, the preface thereof, I was amazed to find out that Graham Greene had written the book just so he could have material from which to make a screenplay, and that he considered the original movie clearly better than the book. I found this a bit surprising at first as this was a solid book - very much a spy/detective novel with some twists and curveballs thrown in, though without the usual degree of moral ambiguity that you find in his other works like The Quiet American. After catching the 1949 movie, with Orson Welles, I got it. The movie was hands-down phenomenal - incredible noir cinematography, and a substantially different concluding scene from the novel.

The Fallen Idol is a much shorter story - 40-50 pages maybe - and packs a powerful punch. It was also made into a movie that Carol Reed directed, although I wasn't quite inspired enough by the story to put that one on my Netflix list.

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